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Tags: phillips | israel | hamas | democrats

Candidate Dean Phillips On Israel-Hamas Divide

By    |   Saturday, 18 November 2023 06:43 PM EST

On the campaign trail for the Democratic presidential nomination, Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., covers a wide array of issues. But none as contentious as the Israel-Hamas conflict, according to NBC News.

Recent public polling reveals a palpable division within the Democratic Party concerning Israel, leading to a protest at the Democratic National Committee headquarters.

According to a recent Quinnipiac University poll, 41% of surveyed Democratic voters expressed sympathy for the Palestinians, 34% leaned towards the Israelis, and 25% remained undecided, reported The Hill.

On Wednesday night, tensions flared as U.S. Capitol Police clashed with pro-Palestinian demonstrators, who were advocating for a cease-fire outside the DNC building near the Capitol. The Capitol Police took to X, asserting that individuals were "illegally and violently protesting."

Exiting Lou's Bakery near Dartmouth College, an employee seized the opportunity to inquire about Phillips' stance on the Israel-Hamas war. Phillips emphasized the need for a secure Palestinian state while calling for the elimination of both Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. He pressed for a new Israeli government, an end to settlements, and a resolution to the ongoing war.

"I believe there desperately needs to be a Palestinian state created that is safe and secure in its opportunity," Phillips said. "Hamas has got to be eliminated. The Palestinian Authority has got to be eliminated."

"I care deeply about both sides. Deeply. Plain and simple," said Phillips. "And the fact that people are taking only one side or the other right now is exactly the problem."

During a conversation with a pro-Palestinian supporter, Phillips advocated for empathy toward both sides, acknowledging the situation's complexity. Phillips, who is Jewish, faced similar tensions within the Democratic Party at his first town hall in New Hampshire in early November.

A young voter pressed him on why he had not called for a cease-fire in Gaza, leading to a heated exchange. Phillips defended his position, emphasizing the need to eradicate Hamas and expressing his desire to collaborate with his "Palestinian sister," Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., on finding a solution.

In Washington, a group of two dozen House Democrats is now urging President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken to support a cease-fire in Gaza.

The situation has also taken a darker turn, with the New Hampshire Democratic Party's Belknap County office vandalized with antisemitic and white supremacist symbols, including a swastika.

New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley condemned the act, stating, "We stand in unwavering solidarity with the Jewish community and all those targeted by these abhorrent acts. We will not be intimidated or deterred in our fight against bigotry.

"We call on every citizen to join us to ensure that New Hampshire remains a place where hate finds no harbor."

Jim Thomas

Jim Thomas is a writer based in Indiana. He holds a bachelor's degree in Political Science, a law degree from U.I.C. Law School, and has practiced law for more than 20 years.

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On the campaign trail for the Democratic presidential nomination, Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., addresses a spectrum of issues. None elicits as much fervor as the Israel-Hamas conflict, according to NBC News.
phillips, israel, hamas, democrats
Saturday, 18 November 2023 06:43 PM
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